"Nico Muhly" tag
Natalia Osipova and David Hallberg in Ratmansky’s Valse Triste.© Johan Persson. (Click image for larger version)

Natalia Osipova – Pure Dance bill – New York

★★★✰✰   So, is Pure Dance a success? It depends on what you’re looking for. Osipova is as exciting, and as powerful, a dancer as ever. Among the commissions, only Valse Triste and Flutter are worthy of further exploration…

Tiler Peck in Justin Peck’s Principia.© Erin Baiano. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Herman Schmerman, Principia (new Peck), The Runaway – New York

★★★✰✰   Major draws were the new Justin Peck and a revival of William Forsythe’s 1992 commission Herman Schmerman, not seen in full since the 90s…

Rosas in Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker’s The Six Brandenburg Concertos.© Stephanie Berger. (Click image for larger version)

Some Memorable Performances of 2018 – New York

Other years have been more exciting, I think, but this one has had its share of remarkable performances, including a few thrilling ones. Here, in no particular order, are the ones that really stood out, for one reason or another.

Taylor Stanley in Kyle Abraham’s The Runaway, in costumes by Giles Deacon.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Fall Gala: The Exchange, Judah, The Runaway – New York

★★★✰✰   No evening of new works is perfect; the excitement lies in the hope that at some point some magic will happen. And in that solo for Taylor Stanley by Kyle Abraham, we got a glimpse of that magic.

Natalia Osipova in in the studio preparing for Pure Dance.© Alastair Muir. (Click image for larger version)

Natalia Osipova – Pure Dance – London

★★★✰✰   No trade description problems, here. This was exactly what it said on the tin: Natalia Osipova performing pure dance, enhanced only by recorded music and lighting designs varying from the merest of subtle tints to an explosion of floodlights…

Tessa Barbour and John Speed Orr in Val Caniparoli's If I Were A Sushi Roll.© Chris Hardy. (Click image for larger version)

Smuin Contemporary American Ballet – Dance Series 02: Falling Up, If I Were a Sushi Roll, Oasis – San Francisco

★★★★✰   A title like “If I Were a Sushi Roll” suggests that some whimsy may be in store, and indeed, Caniparoli’s new nine-part dance suite had whimsy to spare…

American Ballet Theatre in The Tempest.© Marty Sohl. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – Opening Night Gala: The Tempest (premiere), Theme and Variations, Aftereffect – New York

Fashioning a ballet out of The Tempest is no small endeavor. How does one distill Shakespeare’s rather complex play into forty-six wordless minutes….

Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild in Spectral Evidence by Angelin Preljocaj.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Fall Gala – New York

Amid all the fuss about the costumes, the choreogaphy paled… What a joy, then, to see a section of Western Symphony, with those marvelous frou-frou tutus by Karinska and that euphoric outpouring of Balanchine’s’ crisp, witty steps.

Janie Taylor and Anthony Huxley in George Balanchine's Ivesiana.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Who Cares?, Ivesiana, Tarantella, Stars & Stripes – New York

But stuck in the middle of all this brightness was Ivesiana, like a ghost at a birthday party. It is a most unsettling ballet.

Trespass: corps dancers (l-r): Leticia Stock, Dawid Trzensimiech, Yasmine Naghdi, Kevin Emerton, Lara Turk, Valentino Zucchetti.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Book – Titian: Metamorphosis – Art, Music, Dance

About the book, complete with 6 Dave Morgan pictures from it…

Troy Schumacher.© Henry Leutwyler. (Click image for larger version)

Troy Schumacher – Satellite Ballet & New York City Ballet – Choreographer and dancer

Dance is a difficult thing to experience outside of the theatre, but for the sustainability of the artform it has to find a way to make itself more widely available.

Benjamin Millepied.© Alexander Wagner. (Click image for larger version)

L.A. Dance Project – Moving Parts, Winterbranch, Quintett – New York

It’s always been clear that Millepied is a man of intelligence and taste.

Marianela Nuñez in Liam Scarlett, Will Tuckett and Jonathan Watkins' Diana & Actaeon.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Titian 2012: Machina, Trespass, Diana & Actaeon – London

Seeing the programme twice confirmed my initial impression that Trespass is the best-wrought work. The other two ballets are interesting as concepts rather than as polished productions. But the programme’s emphasis on creativity and collaboration means that Monica Mason’s farewell contribution to the art form in which she has invested her considerable energy will carry on germinating ideas long after she leaves.

Tyler Angle and Tiler Peck in Two Hearts. © Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Spring Gala – New York

I think it’s safe to say that neither of the new works knocked the planet off its axis…

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